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About David

David R. Taggart is a founding member of the firm, and practices principally in the areas of business and commercial litigation including construction, oil and gas, and regulated public utility matters. David is also an active transactional lawyer, generally in matters related to construction contracts, oil & gas industry agreements and a variety of general business organization contracts and agreements.

 

David has negotiated and drafted numerous contracts for various owners, general contractors, and subcontractors involving the construction or improvement to such projects as hospitals, office buildings, hotels, restaurants, post offices, military housing developments, and storage facilities and airports. 

 

Recently, David has represented several major natural gas transmission and gathering companies in the Southeastern United States on a variety of infrastructure expansion projects.  These projects included numerous interstate transmission line construction projects, including multi-state, large diameter transmission line projects with the associated compressor station construction and expansion projects.  In addition, David has negotiated multiple gas processing plant purchases and installation projects in the Southeastern United States involving both amine treatment and cryogenic gas processing plants.  As lead contract counsel for many of these projects, David has developed the expertise to assist his clients in successfully negotiating long term contracts to support their producer clients in the current natural gas and liquids extraction markets.   

 

David has also been engaged in several private placement offerings on behalf of various parties including multi-million dollar equity investment in such industries as health care and security monitoring. 

LITIGATION:
Ictech-Bendeck v. Progressive Waste Solutions of LA, Inc. et al., No. 2:18-cv-07889, U. S. District Court, Eastern District of Louisiana. This is a class action filed by a putative class of plaintiffs comprising the entirety of the population of Jefferson Parish, Louisiana-approximately 400,000 residents-involving claims of personal injury resulting from alleged “noxious” odors allegedly emanating from the Jefferson Parish Landfill situated in Jefferson Parish, Louisiana. The class action was filed in Louisiana’s 24th Judicial District Court against the owner of the Landfill, Jefferson Parish, and its major contractors, LRLC, Waste Connections Bayou, Inc., Waste Connections US, Inc. (collectively the “Waste Connections Defendants”), and Aptim Corporation. The Waste Connections Defendants removed the case to the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana pursuant to the Class Action Fairness Act (“CAFA”). Subsequently, three additional putative class action petitions were filed in the 24th Judicial District and removed by one or more of the Waste Connections Defendants to the United States District Court in and for the Eastern District of Louisiana, i.e., Thompson v. Louisiana Regional Landfill Company, No. 2:18-cv-08071 (E.D. La.) (commenced on July 30, 2018); Bernard v. Progressive Waste Solutions of LA, Inc., 2:18-cv-08218 (E.D. La.) (commenced on August 10, 2018); and Landry-Boudreaux v. Progressive Waste Solutions of LA, Inc., 2:18-cv-09312 (E.D. La.) (commenced on August 27, 2018). Mr. Taggart is one of the lead counsel for the Waste Connections Defendants along with the Beveridge & Diamond firm. The plaintiffs have moved to remand the class actions and the matter is currently pending before the trial court.

Schaumburg v. Parish of Jefferson, et al, No. 786-052, 24th Judicial District Court, Jefferson Parish, Louisiana. Plaintiff Schaumburg, a resident of Jefferson Parish, Louisiana, filed this action to permanently enjoin the defendants from allowing alleged “noxious odors” to emanate from the Jefferson Parish Landfill. The plaintiff amended his original petition to add as defendants LRLC, Waste Connections Bayou, Inc., Waste Connections US, Inc. (collectively the “Waste Connections Defendants”). Following the filing by the Waste Connections Defendants of pretrial exceptions, the court dismissed the action with prejudice. Mr. Taggart is one of the lead counsel for the Waste Connections Defendants along with the Beveridge & Diamond firm. Frederick Addison et al. v. Louisiana Regional Landfill Company et al., No. 790-369, 24th Judicial District Court, Jefferson Parish, Louisiana. Like the four class actions, the 85 plaintiffs in the Addison mass joinder action allege that odors from the Jefferson Parish Landfill caused them damages in the form of diminution in property value and personal injuries for which they seek damages as well as seeking permanent injunctive relief. The Waste Connections Defendants filed exceptions to the petition on the basis of lis pendens during the pendency of the CAFA class action suits also pertaining to the Jefferson Parish Landfill. The exceptions were sustained by the trial court after hearing and the matter was stayed pending the outcome of the class action matters in federal court. Mr. Taggart is one of the lead counsel for the Waste Connections Defendants along with the Beveridge & Diamond firm.

Citizens National Bank, N.A. v. Jerry Webb et al., No. 598-157-C, 1st Judicial District Court, Caddo Parish, Louisiana. This is an action on personal guarantees of loans involved in the deBerardinis Ponzi fraud scheme. As a parallel fraud and damage suit is pending in Dallas, Texas, on behalf of the defendants Mr. Taggart filed and prosecuted exceptions of lis pendens which were granted, and the matter stayed as to the defendants. Origin Bank v. Succession of Long, et al., No. 599,288-B, 1st Judicial District Court, Caddo Parish, Louisiana. This is an action on personal guarantees of loans involved in the deBerardinis Ponzi fraud scheme. As a parallel fraud and damage suit is pending in Dallas, Texas, on behalf of certain of the defendants, Mr. Taggart filed and prosecuted exceptions of lis pendens which were granted and the matter stayed as to those defendants.

Louisiana Public Service Commission v. Environmental Protection Agency – Mr. Taggart served as special counsel for the Louisiana Public Service Commission (LPSC) seeking administrative reconsideration of the EPA’s August 7, 2011, Cross State Air Pollution Rule (CSAPR).  On December 30, 2011, two days before CSAPR was slated to become effective, the United States Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit granted the motion for stay that the LPSC jointly filed in October with the Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality and the Louisiana Attorney General’s Office pending the Court’s resolution of the petitions for review.  This action was consolidated for oral argument on the request for injunctive relief and oral arguments were heard by the panel on April 13, 2012.  Following a judgment in favor of the consolidated petitioners by the D.C. Circuit, the U. S. Supreme Court granted the writ for certiorari by the EPA and, after oral argument, reversed and remanded the case the Court of Appeals for the D. C. Circuit for further hearing. The EPA’s CSAPR was thereafter upheld by the Court of Appeals. The matter remains one of significance to the citizens of the State of Louisiana and to the other affected states, citizens and entities regarding the regulatory powers of the EPA.

State of Texas et al. v. Environmental Protection Agency, No. 16-60118, U.S. Court of Appeals, Fifth Circuit. Mr. Taggart was lead counsel for Nucor Corporation, one of numerous petitioners in this consolidated action, challenging the EPA’s Federal Implementation Plan for Regional Haze relating to the disapproval of portions of the Texas and Oklahoma Regional Haze State Implementation Plan and a request for stay of the EPA’s Final Rule. Following briefing by the parties, on July 15, 2016, the Fifth Circuit granted the stay as prayed for. Thereafter, the EPA filed a petition to allow the Final Rule to be remanded to EPA for further consideration which was granted but without prejudice to the stay of the Final Rule as it related to the Texas and Oklahoma FIP. This case remains one of importance regarding the limits of administrative rule-making authority of the EPA. Related proceedings in the U.S. Courts of Appeal for the Tenth and D.C. Circuits were similarly abated but remain pending under the auspices of the Courts of Appeal for the Fifth, Tenth and D.C. Circuits.

Progressive Waste Solutions of LA, Inc. v. Rubicon Global, LLC et al., No. 594,958, First Judicial District Court, Caddo Parish, Louisiana. Mr. Taggart was lead counsel for the plaintiff and reconventional plaintiffs, Progressive Waste Solutions of LA, Inc., a subsidiary of Waste Connections, Inc., a leader in the waste hauling and recycling industry, in an action involving counterclaims of an anti-competitive nature from Rubicon Global involving claims of unfair competition. Mr. Taggart successfully obtained a temporary restraining order against the defendant, Rubicon Global, preventing the towing of the waste containers of Progressive on a statewide basis and thereafter was successful in converting the temporary restraining order to a preliminary injunction. After significant discovery and pre-trial motion practice, the matter was settled.

Waste Connections of Texas, LLC v. Rubicon Global, LLC; No. 2017-52435In the 125th Judicial District Court of Harris County, Texas. Mr. Taggart was co-counsel with Baker Hostetler for the plaintiff, Waste Connections of Texas, LLC, a subsidiary of Waste Connections, Inc., a leader in the waste hauling and recycling industry, in an action involving claims of an anti-competitive nature from Rubicon Global, including claims of unfair trade practices. Mr. Taggart and the Baker Hostetler trial team successfully obtained a preliminary injunction against the defendant, Rubicon Global, after a full 2-day trial preventing the towing of the waste containers of Progressive on a statewide basis throughout the state of Texas. After significant discovery and pre-trial motion practice, the matter was settled.

Davis, Sr. et al. v. United States of America, No. 09-30392, U.S. Court of Appeals, Fifth Circuit (Nov. 20, 2010), writ denied, No. 10-1328, U.S. Supreme Court. May 31, 2011). This case involved the aftermath of a failed multi-facility hospital network that served the poor and underprivileged citizens of Louisiana, the Winward Hospital system, which was funded primarily by Medicare. Petitioners were officers and directors who were each summarily cast in judgment for “willfully” failing to pay more than $3 million in allegedly due and unpaid payroll taxes. The presumption of willfulness was based on the fact that the Hospital continued to pay non-IRS creditors, in addition to the IRS, while a negotiated installment agreement with the IRS, which contemplated continuation of business operations, was being perfected with the consent and permission of the IRS. The question presented by this case was whether the doctrine of equitable estoppel precludes a finding of willfulness in a Section 6672(a) action where the “responsible person” detrimentally relied on affirmative representations made by an IRS agent. Mr. Taggart argued the matter to the Fifth Circuit, but the Fifth Circuit ultimately refused to apply the doctrine of equitable estoppel to the facts of this matter. The U. S. Supreme Court denied writs. The case was ultimately resolved by settlement.

J-W Power Company v. Louisiana Department of Revenue, No. 2010-C-1598, La. S. Ct. (Mar. 15, 2011), rehearing denied, April 29, 2011. In a case of first impression in the state, Mr. Taggart obtained a 3-0 reversal and remand decision from the Louisiana First Circuit Court of Appeals in a state sales tax case that has significant impact in the sales tax litigation arena within the state. The precise issue had never been precisely addressed in any prior published decision in the state, although the 1993 decision of the Louisiana Supreme Court in the case of Cox Cable New Orleans, Inc. v. City of New Orleans, 92-2311 (La. 9/3/93), 624 So.2d 890 suggested that the result was correct. The issue presented for decision was whether a taxpayer may file and prosecute a sales tax refund action through an agent in an action in which the actual taxpayer was not a party. The trial court granted a no right of action exception filed by the State Department of Revenue and J-W appealed. Mr. Taggart argued the matter to the Court of Appeals which reversed the decision of the trial court. The State took writs to the Supreme Court, which were granted. Mr. Taggart argued the matter for J-W at the Supreme Court. The Louisiana Supreme Court affirmed the decision of the Court of Appeals and held that a taxpayer may file and prosecute a tax refund action through an agent even if the actual taxpayer is not a party to the action.

Avram Cimerring v. ORIX Capital Markets, L.L.C., No. 08-30341, consolidated with No. 08-30343, U.S. Court of Appeals, Fifth Circuit (April 14, 2008). The United States Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed a summary judgment obtained by Mr. Taggart against a debtor seeking to avoid personal liability on an underlying debt due to internal accounting practices of the Special Servicer of the Trustee of a Real Estate Mortgage Investment Conduit (“REMIC”). The case was one of first impression and of great interest to the REMIC industry. In this matter, a debtor sought to use the REMIC rules and the internal accounting procedures, which were intended for the benefit of the certificate holders, to discharge the underlying debt included within the pooled investments. Mr. Taggart argued the matters at the trial court as well as the Fifth Circuit. The decision of the Fifth Circuit rejected the debtor’s attempt to modify the liability of the parties to the secured debt by reference to the REMIC’s internal characterization of the funds received and distributed to the certificate holders. This decision is seen as one of importance to the industry.

DeSoto Parish School Board v. Texas Eastern Transmission Corporation and The Chevron Pipe Line Company, No. 96-3360-B-M2, United States District Court, Middle District of Louisiana. This suit was filed by the DeSoto Parish School Board against Chevron, the successor to Gulf Oil Corporation, and TETCO, the pipeline operator, of a former oil storage tank farm. The property comprising the former tank farm had been purchased by the DeSoto Parish School Board which constructed a public school on the property and then subsequently discovered hydrocarbon contamination allegedly from the prior oil farm and pipeline operations conducted thereon. Mr. Taggart represented TETCO in the successful defense of the environmental contamination and remediation action.

Fleet Oil & Gas Production Company, L.L.C. et al v. Chesapeake Louisiana, L.P., et al., No. 15-2461, U.S. District Court, Western District of Louisiana. Mr. Taggart is lead counsel for the plaintiffs in one of several challenges to various business practices of Chesapeake involving the allocation of certain post-production costs to non-cost bearing royalty and over-riding royalty interests. After some discovery and before trial, Chesapeake filed a motion for summary judgment which was granted by the trial court. A motion for reconsideration was timely filed and remains pending before the trial court judge.

Martin Producing, L.L.C. et al v. Chesapeake Louisiana, L.P., et al., No. 5:16-cv-01109, U.S. District Court, Western District of Louisiana. Mr. Taggart was lead counsel for the plaintiff in seeking to enforce the terms of an assignment of oil and gas interests to Chesapeake arising out of the original oil and gas prospect that resulted in the discovery of the prolific Haynesville Shale in the Northwest Louisiana area. After substantial discovery but before trial the matter was successfully resolved in mediation.

Martin Producing, L.L.C. v. Chesapeake Louisiana, L.P., et al., No. 5:16-cv-01616, U.S. District Court, Western District of Louisiana. Mr. Taggart was lead counsel for the plaintiff in one of several challenges to various business practices of Chesapeake involving the allocation of certain post-production costs to non-cost bearing royalty and over-riding royalty interests and the “netting” of revenues and expenses from different properties and against different interests. After significant discovery, but before trial, the matter was successfully resolved in mediation.

AWT Be Good LLC v. Chesapeake Louisiana, L.P., et al., No. 5:16-cv-01412, U.S. District Court, Western District of Louisiana. Mr. Taggart is lead counsel for the plaintiff in one of several challenges to various business practices of Chesapeake involving whether Chesapeake and its sublessees (PXP) can deduct pipeline “capacity” or “reservation” costs from the lease royalty which provides that the royalty shall be entirely cost free. After significant discovery, all parties filed motions for summary judgment which were ultimately denied by the Court. The matter is currently in the discovery process and trial has not yet been scheduled.

Kenneth W. Sanders, M.D., et ux v. Daniel R. Knight, M.D., et al., No. 593,067, First Judicial District Court, Caddo Parish, Louisiana. Mr. Taggart is lead counsel for the defendants and reconventional plaintiffs in a breach of fiduciary duty and damages suit between and among physician-owners of an ambulatory surgery center. The matter is in discovery and has not yet been scheduled for trial.

Stefan Meador et al. v. Christine Fodale, et al., No. SA-15-CA-01124, U.S. District Court, Western District of Texas, San Antonio Division. Mr. Taggart was lead counsel for the defendants in claims brought under the Fair Labor Standards Act by former employees of several bankrupt oil field service companies against the former officers in their individual capacities. After discovery, the claims of the Plaintiffs were defeated in motions for summary judgment on behalf of the individual officers.

Nelson Menchaca et al. v. Christine Fodale, et al., No. SA-15-CA-00910, U.S. District Court, Western District of Texas, San Antonio Division. Mr. Taggart was lead counsel for the defendants in claims brought under the Fair Labor Standards Act by former employees of bankrupt oil field service companies against the former officers in their individual capacities. After discovery, the claims of the Plaintiffs were defeated in motions for summary judgment on behalf of the individual officers.

Forrest P. Wall, M.D., F.A.C.S. v. Gregory W. Bryan, DPM, Et al., Docket No. 584,344, First Judicial District Court, Caddo Parish, Louisiana. This was a breach of contract, tort and breach of fiduciary duty action involving several former partners in a medical health care facility. Mr. Taggart was lead counsel for the plaintiff and successfully represented the Plaintiff through trial on the merits resulting a judgment in favor of the plaintiff in the Trial Court, which judgment was affirmed on appeal by the Second Circuit Court of Appeals.

John Barron Skannal Individually, as Testamentary Executor of the Succession of John C. Skannal Trust, and A.C. Skannal, III vs. Jones, Odom, Davis & Politz, Docket No. 130,863-F, 26th Judicial District Court, Bossier Parish, Louisiana. This was a suit by former clients of the defendant law firm to annual a contingency fee agreement award following the successful representation of the clients by the law firm to judgment and the recovery of property and assets valued in the millions of dollars. The matter involved, in part, a matter of first impression in Louisiana on the enforceability of hybrid-type engagement agreements. Mr. Taggart successfully represented the law firm in the trial court which concluded that the hybrid-type agreement was enforceable in Louisiana. The plaintiffs sought writs to the Second Circuit Court of Appeals. Mr. Taggart argued the matter before the Second Circuit, but the Second Circuit Court of Appeals found, in this instance, that the hybrid-type of legal engagement agreement was unenforceable. The matter was remanded for trial but settled prior to trial on the merits.

Zen-Noh Grain Corporation v. State of Louisiana, Department of Environmental Quality, Docket No. 592,081, consolidated with 599,938, Division D, Section 21, 19th Judicial District Court, East Baton Rouge Parish, State of Louisiana. These consolidated suits were filed by plaintiff Zen-Noh against the Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality seeking judicial review of LDEQ’s issuance of Pig Iron Title V and PSD permits for Nucor Steel Louisiana’s proposed Pig Iron and DRI plants in St. James Parish, Louisiana. Mr. Taggart was lead counsel for intervenor, Nucor. After significant discovery and following pretrial rulings by the Court on significant aspects of the dispute, the matter was settled prior to trial on the merits.

Zen-Noh Grain Corporation v. State of Louisiana, Department of Environmental Quality, Docket No. 611066, Division D, Section 21, 19th Judicial District Court, East Baton Rouge Parish, State of Louisiana. This is another action filed by Zen-Noh against LDEQ seeking judicial review of LDEQ’s modification of Nucor’s DRI Part 70 Permit No. 3086-VI for the DRI Plant located in St. James Parish, Louisiana. Nucor intervened to protect its permit with Mr. Taggart as lead counsel. After discovery and pretrial motion practice, this matter was settled prior to trial on the merits.

Zen-Noh Grain Corporation v. State of Louisiana, Department of Environmental Quality, Docket No. 618489, Division D, Section 26, 19th Judicial District Court, East Baton Rouge Parish, State of Louisiana. This is the appeal by Zen-Noh of the issuance by the LDEQ of the modification to Nucor’s DRI PSD Permit. Nucor intervened to protect its permit with Mr. Taggart as lead counsel. This matter was settled prior to trial on the merits.

State of Louisiana, Department of Environmental Quality v. The United States Environmental
Protection Agency, Case No. 12-60482, United States Court of Appeals, Fifth Circuit. This Petition for Review was filed by LDEQ in response to an Order by EPA granting two Zen-Noh petitions for objection to three permits issued to Nucor by LDEQ pertaining to Nucor’s proposed Pig Iron plant and the DRI Plant in St. James Parish, Louisiana. In order to protect its interests and permits, Nucor intervened in the action on behalf of LDEQ. LDEQ and Nucor sought an order vacating the Order, a declaratory ruling prohibiting EPA from objecting to the terms of a valid PSD permit using its Title V objection authority, and otherwise declaring the appropriate objection process for title V permits under 42 U.S.C. §7661d(2011). On September 13, 2013, the three-judge panel dismissed LDEQ’s Petition for Review on the basis of lack of subject matter jurisdiction holding that the Title V process vested exclusive review jurisdiction in the EPA and thus aligning the Fifth Circuit with other Circuit Courts of Appeal, specifically the Ninth Circuit. Mr. Taggart was lead counsel for Nucor.

Nucor Steel Louisiana, LLC v. Zen-Noh Grain Corporation, CGB Marine Services at Mile 64, a division of Consolidated Grain & Barge, Inc., Consolidated Grain & Barge, Inc., CGB Enterprises, Inc., Civil Action No. 34,392-E, 23rd Judicial District Court, St. James Parish, Louisiana. This is a suit brought by Nucor against Zen-Noh Corporation and related entities for recovery of damages caused by defendants’ (1) unlawful placement of barges, equipment, and other structures on the Mississippi River waterfront adjacent to Nucor’s St. James Parish facility, and (2) emission of harmful amounts of particulate matter on or near Nucor’s St. James Parish facility. Mr. Taggart was lead counsel for Nucor. The matter was settled prior to trial on the merits.

Zen-Noh Grain Corporation v. Consolidated Environmental Management, Inc. – Nucor Steel Louisiana, Civil Action Number 12-1011, Section R(1), United States District Court, Eastern District of Louisiana. This suit was filed by Zen-Noh to enjoin Consolidated Environmental Management, Inc., Nucor Corporation, Nucor Big Iron Holdings, Inc., and Nucor Steel Louisiana, LLC from constructing its manufacturing plant in St. James Parish, Louisiana. Nucor, represented by Mr. Taggart as lead counsel, obtained a dismissal with prejudice of the Zen-Noh action following motion practice and prior to trial.

Consolidated Environmental Management, Inc. v. Zen-Noh Grain Corporation, Civil Action No. 12- 01738, United States District Court, Eastern District of Louisiana. This is a suit brought by CEMI, represented by Mr. Taggart as lead counsel, against Zen-Noh Grain Corporation brought under the Clean Air Act, alleging various the Clean Air Act and permit violations pertaining to Zen-Noh’s St. James Parish grain export elevator facility which was located adjacent to the Nucor facility in St. James Parish. The matter was dismissed prior to trial on the defendant’s motion for summary judgment. This matter was settled during the pendency of the appeal.

John Smuck v. Raymond Lusk and Vulcraft Carrier Corporation, Civil Action No. 13-02504 United States District Court, Eastern District of Louisiana. This is a personal injury claimed filed by plaintiff who was allegedly injured when a piece of steel fell from defendant’s flat bed truck while en route to its final destination. Mr. Taggart was lead counsel for the defendant. Following discovery and after the filing of a motion to dismiss, this matter was settled prior to trial on the merits after successful motion practice.

In the Matter of the Final Operating Permit for Big River Steel, LLC, Docket No. 13-006-P, Arkansas Pollution Control and Ecology Commission. This was an appeal brought by Nucor Corporation, through its Arkansas affiliate, Nucor Steel-Arkansas, and Nucor-Yamato Steel Company, seeking review of the permit granted Big River Steel by the Arkansas Department of Environmental Quality allowing construction and operation of a proposed steel mill in Osceola, Arkansas. Mr. Taggart was lead counsel for the Nucor plaintiffs in the litigation. The matter was tried in February 2014 and the issuance of the challenged permit was approved by the administrative law judge for the agency. Appeals through both the State appellate process and a separate action through the U.S. District Court in and for the Eastern District of Arkansas and the U.S. Court of Appeal for the Eighth Circuit were unsuccessful in invalidating the permit but were successful in obtaining declared precedent clarifying the Title V permit review
process as the exclusive means of review of such permits. This precedent aligns the Eighth Circuit with the Fifth Circuit in providing that the Title V permit review process is the exclusive means to challenge air permits issued by the EPA-approved state agency and lends clarity to the industry.

LifeCare Hospital, Inc. v. Shreveport Doctors Hospital, 2003, LTD., Civil action No. 05-0553, United States District Court, Western District of Louisiana, Shreveport Division. This was a breach of contract action in which Mr. Taggart represented the plaintiff, LifeCare. Following the issuance of a TRO to prevent the breach by the defendant, Mr. Taggart successfully tried the matter to judgment on behalf of the plaintiff on extremely expedited trial schedule.

Denergy Exploration, L.L.C., et al. v. Mobley Valve Service, Inc., et al., Docket No. 505,936-A, First Judicial District Court, Caddo Parish, Louisiana. This was a breach of contract, fraud and removal of oil and gas operator suit filed on behalf of plaintiffs. Mr. Taggart was lead counsel for plaintiffs. The case settled prior to trial after successful motion practice.

CenterPoint Energy, Inc. and CenterPoint Energy Gas Transmission Company v. Associated Electric & Gas Insurance Services Limited and Illinois Union Insurance Company, Cause No. 4:09-cv-2107, United States District Court, Southern District of Texas, Houston Division. This was a suit under a builder’s insurance policy for a $9 million property damage claim resulting from a failed horizontal directional drill. Mr. Taggart was co-counsel to Texas lead counsel. The matter was tried to jury verdict for plaintiff and the resulting judgment was settled during the pendency of the appeal.

CenterPoint Energy Gas Transmission Company, LLC v. Jindal SAW Limited, Cause No. 2011-37292, 164th Judicial District Court, Harris County, Texas. This was a suit by plaintiff, an interstate natural gas transmission company, for breach of warranty and breach of contract by the manufacturer of high pressure, thick wall transmission pipe. Mr. Taggart was lead counsel for the plaintiff in the action. The case settled after mediation prior to trial.

Wells Fargo Bank N.A, by and through ORIX Capital Markets, L.L.C. v. Avram Cimerring, et al., Docket No. 502,370-A, First Judicial District Court, Caddo Parish, Louisiana. This was a suit against wholly owned entities of Israeli owners to enforce a $7 million dollar judgment. Mr. Taggart was lead counsel for the plaintiff and obtained a judgment for plaintiff on motion for summary judgment.

Tealwood Properties, L.L.C. v. The Succession of Glen D. Graves, Mary Maricelli Graves, Dale Oil Company, Inc. aka Dale Oil Corporation, Docket No. 522,235, First Judicial District Court, Caddo Parish Louisiana. This is a defense of breach of contract claim for sale of property without minerals in a Haynesville Shale play. The matter is pending.

Magnolia Point Minerals, LLC v. Chesapeake Louisiana, LP and PXP Louisiana L.L.C., Civil Action No. 5:11-CV-00854, United States District Court, Western District of Louisiana, Shreveport Division. This was a suit by a mineral lessor against mineral lessees for lease cancellation for improper payment of royalties arising out of the allocation of certain post-production costs to the mineral lessor’s royalty that expressly provided that no costs or expenses were to be borne by the lessor’s royalty. The matter settled after successful motion practice.

Hollomon Corporation v. Eagle Rock Energy Partners, LP, Eagle Rock Energy G&P, LLC, Cause No. 2011-53642, 165th Judicial District Court, Harris County, Texas. This is a suit by plaintiff seeking damages of $3,989,207.20 for the alleged breach of a construction contract for the design and construction of a cryogenic plant near Canadian, Hemphill County, Texas. Mr. Taggart was lead counsel for the defendants. Following a successful diversion to binding arbitration, the matter settled after mediation.

Harry L. Avant v. JC Fitzgerald Energy Services, Inc. et al., Suit No. 559,864, First Judicial District Court, Caddo Parish, Louisiana. This was a suit for declaratory judgment and for damages against an oil and gas service firm by a member in which the plaintiff was represented by Mr. Taggart as lead counsel. After pre-trial proceedings the matter settled prior to trial on the merits.

Glenn W. Schoenhals v. Precision Sports Robotics, LLC, Fungoman, LLC, PSR Investors, Inc. f/k/a Fungoman, Inc., Romy Cucjen, Denny. Duron and Wesley Usie, American Arbitration Association Case No. 69-181-Y-00884-08, Caddo Parish, Louisiana. This matter involved claims for declaratory relief and damages from the plaintiff relating to the investment in a patented baseball invention. Mr. Taggart was lead counsel for various defendants. After mediation, and prior to hearing, the matter was settled.

Jones Energy Company, LLC v. Chesapeake Louisiana, L.P., et al., Civil Action No. 09-01425, United States District Court, Western District of Louisiana, Shreveport Division. This is a suit by a mineral owner for damages, an accounting and for declaratory relief under the governing Louisiana oil and gas statutes governing recovery of penalties in which Mr. Taggart represented the plaintiff as lead counsel. The case was tried and judgment rendered, in part, for plaintiff on two issues of first impression under Louisiana law. First the Court ruled that the operator may not commingle revenue from multiple wells in order to recover non-consent penalties under La. R. S. 30:10 and second the Court ruled that the non-operator is not personally liable for the payment of non-consent penalties but that such recovery is limited in rem to the proceeds from the subject well. The precedent remains important and guiding precedent for working and royalty interest owners in Louisiana.

Jones Ponderosa, LLC v. Fossil Energy, Inc., et al., Civil Action No. 5:09-cv-00868, United States District Court, Western District of Louisiana, Shreveport, Division. This is a suit by plaintiff for damages to commercial forestry operations from oilfield caused wildfire in which Mr. Taggart represented the plaintiff. The matter was settled after submission of plaintiff’s expert reports prior to trial.

Dr. Sarojini Bose and Dr. Subhash Bose v. Dr. Michael Angelo, Gregory S. Garson, Thomas P. Bass, Kenneth Gordon, Jr., Susan Gordon, CPG Investments, LLP, Performance Health Technologies, Inc., Dawson James Securities, Inc., North Coast Securities Corporation, First Allied Securities, Inc. and Capital Partners, LLC, Cause No. C-940-11-D, 206th Judicial District Court, Hidalgo County, Texas. This was a defense of securities fraud claims against a former securities broker dealer. Mr. Taggart was lead counsel for one of the principal defendants, with the assistance of Texas co-counsel. The matter was successfully diverted to FINRA arbitration where the matter settled prior to hearing on the merits.

Dr. Sunny Z. Hussain vs. Gregory S. Garson, Case No. 5:10cv00711, United States, District Court, Western District of Louisiana, Shreveport Division. This is a defense of a securities fraud claim against a former securities broker dealer. Mr. Taggart was lead counsel for the defendant and obtained a successful diversion to FINRA arbitration. The matter settled after mediation and prior to the hearing on the merits.

Carol Davis Gamble v. Jack R. Gamble, Jr., Docket No. 535081-F, First Judicial District Court, Caddo Parish, Louisiana. This was a suit by the ex-wife for partition of former community property and for RICO damages against her former spouse. Mr. Taggart was co-counsel for the plaintiff. Mr. Taggart successfully obtained a pretrial judgment refusing to dismiss the civil RICO claims. The defendants sought writs on the RICO matters, but the court of appeals denied the writs. The matter settled after substantial motion practice and after mediation.

Samson Contour Energy & P, L.L.C. v. Billy Jean Smith, et al., Docket No. 66462-F, Twenty-Sixth Judicial District Court, Webster Parish, Louisiana and Joe Lynn Robinson and Mark Alan Smith, Independent Co-Administrators of the Succession of Effie Smith Connell v. Samson Contour Energy E&P, LLC, Docket No. 67054, Twenty-sixth Judicial District Court, Webster Parish, Louisiana. This was a suit to terminate an oil and gas lease for lapse of production, for damages for non-payment of royalties and for double royalties, interest, costs and attorneys’ fees. Mr. Taggart was lead counsel and tried the matter for 4 days in 2013 to judgment. The Court awarded in excess of $3.6 million to plaintiffs, including an award of attorneys’ fees in excess of $500,000.

Collins Pipeline Construction, Inc. v. CenterPoint Energy Gas Transmission Company, et al., Cause No. 2008-49924, 295th Judicial District Court, Harris County, Texas. This was the defense of a contract claim asserted by a default-terminated contractor. Mr. Taggart was co-counsel with Texas lead counsel. The case settled prior to trial after significant motion practice and discovery.

Southwestern Electric Power Company vs. AMAX Inc. and AMAX Coal Company, No. 377,230, First Judicial District Court, Caddo Parish, Louisiana. This was a suit by an electric utility against a Powder River Basin coal company for breach of a long term coal supply agreement in which Mr. Taggart represented the plaintiff utility. The matter settled after substantial discovery and pre-trial motion practice but prior to trial.

Central Louisiana Electric Company, Inc. and Southwestern Electric Power Company v. The Dolet Hills Mining Venture, Mining Beteiligungs-GMBH & Co. KG, Mansfield Mining Company, Civil Action No. CV97-0728m United States District Court, Western District of Louisiana, Shreveport Division. This was a suit by two electric utilities to terminate a long term lignite supply agreement and for damages related to the Dolet Hills Lignite Mine. Mr. Taggart was lead counsel for this action. The case was settled after substantial pre-trial discovery and substantial pre-trial motion practice but prior to trial.

Southwestern Electric Power Company v. Burlington Northern, Inc., The Kansas City Southern Railway Company and Louisiana & Arkansas Railway Company, Civil Action No. M-79-96-CA, United States District Court, Eastern District of Texas, Marshall Division. This was a suit by an electric utility for breach of a long term rail transportation agreement and for damages. The matter was tried to judgment fin favor of the utility and against the Burlington Northern for $100 million dollars after 6-week jury trial. The plaintiff’s claims against The Kansas City Southern Railway Company were settled prior to judgment. The judgment the money judgment against the Burlington Northern was reversed at Texas Supreme Court. Mr. Taggart was co-counsel with Texas lead counsel for the plaintiff utility.

Louisiana Rent-A-Car, LLC v. Budget Rent-A-Car Systems, Inc., Docket No. 530231-C, First Judicial District Court, Caddo Parish, Louisiana. This was the defense of a breach of franchise agreement in which Mr. Taggart represented the defendant. The matter settled prior to trial.

Brian A. Cowan v. Morgan Keegan & Company, Inc. and Tandy G. Lewis, Civil Action No. 5:09-cv-01644-TS-MLH, United States District Court, Western District of Louisiana, Shreveport Division. This was a suit for damages for Auction Rate Securities misrepresentation in which Mr. Taggart represented the plaintiff. The matter settled after discovery but prior to trial.

General Growth Properties, Inc.. Pierre Bossier Mall, L.L.C. v. SM Newco Bossier City, L.L.C., Coventry Real Estate Advisers, L.L.C., and Virginia College, LLC, Suit No. 136072, Division D, 26th Judicial District Court, Bossier Parish, Louisiana. This was a suit for breach of contract by a shopping mall against an anchor tenant. The matter settled after discovery and substantial motion practice prior to trial.

Rampant Leon Financial Corp. and Bell Energy, Inc. v. Ward Land & Timber, L.L.C. and Carl Lee Ward, Jr., Docket No. 135040-C, 26th Judicial District Court, Bossier Parish, Louisiana. This was a suit for injunctive relief to prevent interference by landowner with Enhanced Oil Recovery operation in which the plaintiff was represented by Mr. Taggart. The matter settled prior to trial following motion practice.

Orpheum Recovery Group, LLC, as the Duly Appointed Note Holder Representative of Holders of Senior Secured Debentures of W Properties Acquisition I, LLC v. W Properties Acquisition I., LLC, W Properties Group, LLC, 129 University Place LLC, Richard Weyand, Peter Thiessen and Andrew Reid, Docket No. 2011-446-Section 10, Civil District Court, Orleans Parish, Louisiana. This was the defense of a suit by debenture holders to foreclose on a historic New Orleans theater that had been damaged by Hurricane Katrina in which Mr. Taggart represented the current owner of the theater. The matter was successfully diverted to arbitration. The matter was tried to conclusion in arbitration but was settled prior to rendition of decision by the arbitrator.

Principal Life Insurance Group v. Bobbie Loretta Moore Luttrell, et al, Docket No. 553,462-A, 1st Judicial District Court, Caddo Parish, Louisiana. This was a concursus proceeding related to claims under policy by beneficiary accused of arranging the murder for hire of the insured. Mr. Taggart represented the insurer. The matter settled prior to trial.

Crenshaw &Crenshaw, XII, L.L.C. v. Nitro Gaming, Inc., Docket No. 65,954, Twenty-Sixth Judicial District Court, Webster Parish, Louisiana. This was the defense of an action to terminate a truck stop video poker franchise in which Mr. Taggart represented the defendant gaming company. The matter was tried to judgment without a jury resulting in a take nothing judgment for the defense after trial.

Nitro Gaming, Inc. v. Crenshaw & Crenshaw, XII, L.L.C. and Grand Pacific Finance Corporation, Docket No. 524,431-B, First Judicial District Court, Caddo Parish, Louisiana. This was a concursus proceeding by a truck stop video poker casino operator after foreclosure of truck stop by the prime lender. Mr. Taggart represented the plaintiff. The matter settled after motion practice and prior to trial.

Joyce L. Tilley, J. Scott Tilley and Tilley’s Manufactured Housing, Inc. v. Gregory P. Tilley, Bossie Mobile Homes, Inc., and Tilley Investments, LLC, Docket No. 538294-A, First Judicial District Court, Caddo Parish, Louisiana. This was the defense of a breach of a non-compete agreement and franchise agreement in which the plaintiffs were represented by Mr. Taggart. The matter settled after mediation.

Charles Richard Casares, Carol Casares, Darbi Rice, Brian Rice, Melvin Edwards, III, Joyce Edwards and other Similarly Situated Persons v. James M. Brown Builder, Inc., Brown’s Property Development, Inc., James M. Brown Real Estate, Inc., Brown Builders, Inc., James D. Brown, Annie M. Brown, B. Wayne Brown, Ellen Brown, Lauri Brown Dugan, Audubon Oil and Gas Corporation, and Twin Cities Development, L.L.C., Docket Number 127,971, 26th Judicial District Court, Bossier Parish, Louisiana. This was the defense of a putative class action by property owners against the mineral servitude owner and lessee for alleged fraud in Haynesville Shale play by a developer in severing minerals from lots in which Mr. Taggart represented one of the defendants. The matter was resolved in favor of the defendants on motions for summary judgment.

Tracy Price v. Schumacher Homes of Louisiana, Inc., Case No. 69 529 00406 09, American Arbitration Association. This was the defense of an arbitration claim by a homeowner for defective workmanship in the construction. The matter was settled after discovery and prehearing on the merits. Mr. Taggart represented the defendant.

Estate of Larry Conly v. Summit Gas, LLC, Docket No. 525770-C, 1 st Judicial District Court, Caddo Parish, Louisiana. This was the intervention by third party claimant, represented by Mr. Taggart, to establish an ownership interest in Haynesville Shale play leases under an unrecorded agreement. The matter settled prior to trial.

William B. Burns v. Jill Harris Raburn, Administratrix for the Succession of Frances Gunter Harris, Docket No. 442,650-A, 1st Judicial District Court, Caddo Parish, Louisiana. This was the defense of a tax adjudication claim from an ad valorem tax sale purchaser in which Mr. Taggart represented the defendant as lead counsel. The trial court rendered judgment for the defense after trial. The trial court judgment was ultimately reversed on appeal.

Homer Purtle, Jr. v. Fibrebond Corporation, Docket No. 59661-B, 26th Judicial District Court, Webster Parish, Louisiana. This was a suit for breach of contract and for breach of a professional services agreement in which Mr. Taggart represented the plaintiff. The matter was tried to the court without a jury resulting in a judgment for plaintiff after trial.

Barbara Woods Dison v. Murphy Oil USA, Inc., Case No. 69 160 00340 09, American Arbitration Association. This was a defense of various EEOC claims by terminated employee in which Mr. Taggart represented the defendant employer. The matter was tried to the arbitrator for 5 days. The arbitrator rendered a judgment for defense.

84 Lumber Company, L.P. v. Hyphen Construction Group, Inc. and Govind Hospitality, L.L.C., Docket No. 72,759-B, 42nd Judicial District Court, DeSoto Parish, Louisiana. This was a suit to enforce a materialmen’s lien by a first-tier subcontractor on motel in Louisiana. After motion practice and discovery, the matter settled prior to trial.

LA Commissioner of Insurance et al v. Lamar F. Baker, Jr., CPA, APC et al, No. 506530, 19th Judicial District Court, East Baton Rouge Parish, Louisiana. This was the defense of CPA auditors of a failed casualty insurance company from claims by commissioner of insurance for professional negligence. After motion practice and pre-hearing rulings, the matter settled after mediation.

REPRESENTATIVE MATTERS: REGULATORY

Mr. Taggart has represented various electric operating company affiliates of Central and South West Corporation (now American Electric Power) in numerous rate and regulatory proceedings in Texas, Louisiana and Arkansas either as sole or lead counsel or as co-counsel for the utility. A listing of the proceedings is as follows:

Southwestern Electric Power Company
• 1989 Texas Public Utility Commission Reconciliation, Docket No. 8900
• No. 03-92-00543-CV, Texas Industrial Energy Consumers, Appellant, vs. Public Utility Commission of Texas, et al, Appellees, In the Court of Appeals, Third District of Texas, at Austin.
• Docket 10894 – Application of GSU to Reconcile Fuel Costs, Establish New Fixed Fuel Factors, and Recover its Under –Recovered Fuel Expense.
• 1992 PUCT Docket No. 9655 – Snider Avoided Cost Co-Generator Rates
• 1993 Texas Fuel Reconciliation Proceeding Docket No. 12855
• 1994 Fuel Factor Adjustment Filing with the Public Utilities Commission of Texas, Docket No. 12916
• 1995 Arkansas Public Service Commission Filing – Request for Recovery of Litigation and Settlement Expenses for AMAX, Railroads and Delhi
• 1995 Louisiana Public Service Commission Filing – Request for Recovery of Litigation and Settlement Expenses for AMAX, Railroads and Delhi
• 1995 FERC Audit of Central and South West
• 1995 PUCT Fuel Factor Filing
• 1995 Eastman Chemical Company PUCT Docket No. 14435
• 1996 SWEPCO Proposed Base Rate Filing for Texas
• 1996 SWEPCO Proposed Base Rate Filing for Louisiana
• 1996 LPSC Ex Parte Docket No. U-21497, In Re: Development of Standards Governing the Treatment and Allocation of Fuel Costs by Electric Utility Companies
• LPSC Ex Parte Docket No. U-21453, In Re: An Investigation Into Whether Electric Industry Restructuring and Competition In the Provision of Retail Electric Service Is In The Public Interest
• 1997 PUCT Fuel Reconciliation Proceeding, Docket No. 17460
• 1997 PUCT Fuel Reconciliation Proceeding, Docket No. 17310
• 1999 Application Of SWEPCO To Reconcile Fuel Cost and Request for Accounting Order, PUCT, Docket 12855 Filing Package
• 2000 Fuel Reconciliation Proceeding, PUCT Docket No. 22744

West Texas Utilities Company
• 1994 PUCT Fuel Reconciliation (Docket Nos. 13369 and 13949)
• 1998 Application of West Texas Utilities Company for Authority to Reconcile Fuel Costs, PUCT, SOAH Docket No. 473-98-1251, PUCT Docket No. 18607

Central Power and Light
• 1994 PUCT Fuel Reconciliation (Docket No. 13650)
• 1996Application of Central Power and Light Company for Authority to Change Rates before the State Office of Administrative Hearings, PUCT Docket No. 14965, SOAH Docket No. 473-95-1563

CONSTRUCTION

Over the course of his practice, Mr. Taggart has negotiated and drafted numerous contracts for various owners, general contractors and subcontractors involving the construction or improvement to such projects as hospitals, office buildings, hotels, restaurants, post offices, military housing developments and storage facilities and airports.

In recent years, Mr. Taggart has represented several major natural gas transmissions and gathering companies in the Southeastern United States on a variety of infrastructure expansion projects. These projects included numerous interstate transmission line construction projects, including multi-state, large diameter transmission line projects with the associated compressor station construction and expansion projects. In addition, Mr. Taggart has negotiated multiple gas processing plant purchases and installation projects in the Southeastern United States involving both amine treatment and cryogenic gas processing plants. As lead contract counsel for many of these projects, Mr. Taggart has developed the expertise to assist his clients in successfully negotiating long term contracts to support their producer clients in the current natural gas and liquids extraction markets.  Furthermore, Mr. Taggart has been engaged in several private placement offerings on behalf of various parties including multi-million-dollar equity investment in such industries as health care and security monitoring.

Best Lawyers ©,  Shreveport, LA – Oil & Gas Law “Lawyer of the Year”, 2022

 
Recognized by SB Magazine as one of the 2016 “Top Attorneys” in the Shreveport-Bossier area
 
The Best Lawyers in America ©, Shreveport, LA – Mass Tort Litigation / Class Actions “Lawyer of the Year”, 2018, 2020
 
The Best Lawyers in America ©, Shreveport, LA – Oil & Gas Law “Lawyer of the Year”, 2013
 
The Best Lawyers in America ©, Shreveport, LA – Commercial Litigation, Construction Law, Employment Law – Management, Energy Law, Litigation – Construction, Mass Tort Litigation / Class Actions – Defendants. Oil & Gas Law, since 2009
 
The Best Lawyers in America ©, Shreveport, LA –  Labor Law – Management,  Oil & Gas Law, 2009 -2022
 
Law Review, executive editor, 1978-1979 
 
Order of the Coif 
 
Paul M. Hebert Hall of Fame, 1987 
 
Shreveport Campus of Louisiana State University, adjunct faculty In 1989 he was appointed by the Louisiana Supreme Court to serve as Judge Pro Tem of the Shreveport City Court and in 1992 served as a faculty member of a law symposium held in Moscow and St. Petersburg, Russia, on a symposium on the American Civil Jury System 
 
Louisiana Super Lawyers® 2007, 2008, 2010-2013, 2015-present – Business Litigation; Business/Corporate; Construction/Surety 
 
2009 Fellow in Litigation Counsel of America

Mr. Taggart has served on the Adjunct Faculty at the Shreveport Campus of Louisiana State University, was a frequent seminar leader and speaker, and has been an active lecturer in the community.
Practice Areas
Industries
Education
Louisiana State University, Juris Doctor, 1979 

 

University of Louisiana at Monroe, Bachelor of Science, 1973
Bar Affiliations

Louisiana, 1979 
 
Texas, 1995
 
Alabama, 2020

Courts

United States District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana
 
United States District Court for the Western District of Louisiana
 
United States District Court for the Middle District of Louisiana
 
United States Court of Appeals, Fifth Circuit
 
United States Court of Appeals, Eighth Circuit
 
United States Tax Court
 
United States Supreme Court
 
United States District Court for the Southern District of Texas
 
United States District Court for the Eastern District of Texas
 
United States District Court for the Western District of Texas
 
United States District Court for the District of Columbia

Associations

American Bar Association
 
Louisiana State Bar Association
 
Texas Bar Association
 
Shreveport Bar Association
 
American Board of Trial Advocates
 
Phi Kappa Phi
 
Phi Delta Phi